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Canada 5 more women make sexual assault allegations against Brandon massage therapist

23:40  20 january  2020
23:40  20 january  2020 Source:   cbc.ca

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More than 180 female customers of Massage Envy have accused male massage therapists of groping and penetrating them while on the massage One alleged incident involves customer Susan Ingram, of West Chester, Penn., who said she was sexually assaulted in May 2015 by massage

a brown leather bag: In total, 13 women have made sexual assault allegations against a Brandon massage therapist.© Riley Laychuk/CBC In total, 13 women have made sexual assault allegations against a Brandon massage therapist.

A Brandon man who was working as a massage therapist faces five new charges of sexual assault, in addition to the eight existing charges for which he is scheduled to appear in court on Monday.

Michael Petrowski, 55, was arrested on Friday in connection with the five new charges, Brandon police said.

In total, 13 women have told police they were sexually assaulted by the massage therapist.

Initially, two women accused the massage therapist of making inappropriate sexual comments while also touching them in a sexual manner on separate occasions.

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One of the women told police she was sexually assaulted in fall 2018, and a second assault occurred on Oct. 30, 2019. Petrowski was arrested on Nov. 28.

Police said the therapist was working as an independent contractor at a business at the time of the alleged assaults. Since his initial arrest, he has taken a leave of absence and is no longer seeing clients out of the business.

Brandon police Sgt. Kirby Sararas said last month that six more women later came forward to independently report similar occurrences that happened between February and August 2019. Petrowski was arrested again on Dec. 17.

"I do think that when people hear other stories that are similar to theirs, they do get the courage to come forward as well," Sararas said.

The reports were all made separately, police said.

Petrowski is scheduled to appear in court on Monday on the first eight charges.

Since Dec. 17, five more people told police about similar incidents that occurred between last spring and fall.

Petrowski is scheduled to appear in court in relation to the five latest charges on Feb. 10.

Therapist who used phone to read summaries of fantasy novels during massages admits to misconduct .
Chris Elson, who practises in Surrey, admitted to lying to investigators from the College of Massage Therapists of B.C. , and acknowledged that his actions constitute professional misconduct, according to a public notice on the college website.He's now permanently barred from having a cellphone or any other similar devices in his treatment room and will be suspended from practice for five days as part of a consent agreement with the college.The college says Elson's misconduct was serious.

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